The New Red Line: A Study of the Ongoing Segregation in the Broadway Triangle

Oct 27, 2017

The history of housing programs throughout the United States, including New York City, is a history of racial segregation and substandard housing for the poor and marginalized. Despite a stated commitment to the development of affordable housing units to serve New York City's desperate housing needs, Mayor Bill de Blasio's housing plan has created a minimal number of units that are truly affordable for New York's low-income residents while continuing to subsidize developments that exacerbate the legacy of segregation. A real plan to address New York's housing crisis will require the development of truly affordable units, priced according to local community needs and tied to robust and enforceable community benefits agreements. This report outlines the current crisis and the shortcomings of the Mayor's plan to address it, focusing on the ways in which the proposed development in the Broadway Triangle—at the intersection of BedStuy, Bushwick, and Williamsburg—exemplifies the problem. The project proposed by the Rabsky Group offers fewer than three hundred nominally affordable units, many of which will be too expensive for the community's Black and Latino residents, while stimulating a wave of high-income demand likely to accelerate displacement. We demand that the City Council either reject the proposed development or demand the kinds of modifications that will ensure the project serves the community.